The Journey – Bud Badley

Bud Badley group picture

Robert Bruce Madge could be on this group picture with pilots and navigators of 23 Squadron. This could be have been taken when 23 Squadron came back from Italy.

This next photo is part of an album shared by Theodore Griffiths’ son-in-law who has shared most of Theodore Griffiths’ war mementos and recollections.

A flight 23 Squadron Naples 10 November 1943

I never took the time to identify everyone on this photo.

Bud Badley group picture

Maybe the time is right to do so especially if Robert Bruce Madge is on it.

The Journey – Information from Aviation Safety Network (ASN) on Robert Bruce Madge

This is the only information on Bruce’s father that I could find on the Internet last week as we start this journey into the past.

Date: 31 October 1942


Type: de Havilland DH.98 Mosquito NF Mk II

Owner/operator: 23 Squadron Royal Air Force (23 Sqn RAF)

Registration:DD691C/n / msn:

Fatalities: Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 2

Other fatalities:0

Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)

Location: RAF station Bradwell Bay, Essex, England. – United Kingdom

Phase: En route

Nature: Military

Departure airport: RAF Bradwell Bay, Essex

Destination airport: RAF Bradwell Bay


Mosquito DD691/O –

Take off 21:25 hrs

Intruder for Beauvais.

Returned with engine trouble.31.10.1942

Crew: F/Sgt (1066745) Robert Bruce MADGE (pilot) RAFVR – Ok
Sgt P.R. JAMES (nav.) RAFVR – Ok


ORB 23 Sqdn RAF

Copyright © 1996-2018 Aviation Safety Network (ASN)

For what I know Sgt. P.R. James was probably Robert Madge’s navigator for most of his operations.
If this is a fact Sgt. James could be also on this group picture, but according to Bruce Madge he can’t seem to find his father on his father’s group picture.

About that picture, Robert Madge can’t be the second airman in the back on the right. That pilot is Donald Bentley about whom I wrote a lot on this blog.
This brings me to reflect upon how this blog works.

And how to search for anyone who might have been related to 23 Squadron…
To be continued…

The Journey in the Past of a Father

I got a message last week. It was sent as a reply to my featured post How to search this blog?

I found one photo of my father but it would be good to find others. Dad was a pilot who flew in all theatres…

Being curious I asked for more information.

Dad was named Robert Bruce but commonly known as Bruce Madge. He trained during The Battle of Britain. He joined 23 Squadron and flew Havocs, I think Bde and then intruder. He served in Great Britain, Malta, North Africa, Italy, and finally in Europe flying from bases in Britain. He talked of Manston, Little Snoring and High Ercall. At one time he had flown so many OPS that he was put on training Polish flyers on Mossies. He did have a photo album but when I spotted a picture of him with a navigator standing beside a Mossie with German swastikas on the nose, the album disappeared. I understand his flying hours were such that he was up for a DFC but another man in 23 received it. He was not a great believer in medals and did not talk a great deal about his experiences. He loved flying. I found a photo of him in a group near wreckage when they were in Italy. This was by chance. He is right at the back second from right and was about 22 or 23. I will send this.


Bruce Madge

Collection Robert Bruce Madge commonly known as Bruce Madge